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On sinking instead of swimming

Michael Curry on Friday:

"Despite anything that goes on, I am never going to be worried about our offense," Curry said. "I think we are talented enough that if we take care of the basketball, move it and share it amongst ourselves, we will be fine."

Despite anything that goes on? Because the fourth quarter on Saturday was downright ugly. From DBB Reader Petey in Saturday's game thread:

Fun 4th Quarter Facts:

- Jason Maxiell scored to give us 85 points with 6:54 to go. We then sat on 85 until Rasheed's three with :10 to go. That means we went six minutes and forty four seconds - more than half a quarter - without scoring a point.

- Tay scored to give us 82 points with 10:27 to go. We then went ten minutes and seventeen seconds - almost a full quarter - scoring only three points.

The Pistons went from being up by 29 to needing a three-pointer with 10 seconds left to seal the game. The Bobcats outscored the Pistons 30-12 in the final quarter, at one point ripping off 17 unanswered points.

The bench was responsible for most of the carnage, and while some question Michael Curry's decision to leave the starters on the sidelines for so long, I'm actually fine with it. The final quarter of a would-be blowout win in December is as good of a time as any for Curry to let the youngsters sink or swim. As it happens, they sank, though not enough to blow the game.

Afterward, Curry had to justify leaving AI on the bench, and he did so by angrily explaining the real story was how the bench gave up the lead. It's tough love, being called out after a game, but it comes with the territory. I'm all for allowing young players to play through mistakes, but when they botch things so badly that several starters are called back, the first question shouldn't be "but how come this particular starter didn't play again?"

And for what it's worth, Iverson has no regrets given the outcome:

"I don't want to bring anything negative to this situation. We won the basketball game. That's the most important thing. And it's bigger than just me. It's a team thing, and we got it done. I would be a total (bleep) if I came in here and started ranting about not getting in, in the fourth quarter after we won a basketball game. The mission was accomplished."

They're not all pretty, but they count the same in the standings. I'll take it.